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The Silent spring

Posted on Oct 16, 2015  |   1717 views  

The image shows a lonely Ibis bird on Okobaba sawmill in Lagos (this is the largest area of sawmill activity in Lagos) illustrates the fact that a great number trees are being fell (causing air pollution), some of which are used as canoes while a vast number of them are abandoned on the Lagos lagoon. Thus, this brings about the introduction of exotic species, which are being displaced from their primary habitat as their major source of survival has been degraded. This, in the long run leads to extinction of such species as the Ibis bird’s population are gradually lost to environmental degradation, especially due to air pollution, hence, a change in climate. Pollution in the Niger Delta Area of Nigeria was reviewed to create awareness of its consequences and minimize it. Air pollution is one of the major environmental problems confronting the Niger Delta Area (NDA) yet information regarding this is very scanty. The NDA is Nigeria’s most endowed region in terms of oil mineral reserves and one of the most industrialized .The operations of these industries especially the upstream and downstream petroleum sectors as well as a variety of other anthropogenically related activities including biomass combustion, refuse burning and traffic emissions releases a barrage of substances like volatile organics, oxides of carbon, nitrogen, sulphur, particulate matter, heavy metals and other toxics at levels that most times exceed both the national and international guidelines. Apart from compromising the quality of the atmosphere most of the air pollution in the region is observed to have local and regional effects such as the formation of acid rain, water pollution, soil pollution and impacts on plants and wild life, effects on materials and artifacts and recently contributing to the global warming effects. While most of these claims may be true a great majority has not been substantiated scientifically and is rather based on assumptions or being speculative. Like in most developing nations the issues are multifaceted and the most acute have been lack of equipment, inadequate expertise, lack of infrastructure and weak policy frame work. This and many other factors has been the bane to achieving the much desired goals towards preserving the quality of the ecosystems and safeguarding the health of the public in the region. It is imperative that the developed countries and the rapidly developing countries formulate strategies to curb greenhouse gas emissions. Countries on the fast track of economic growth should also look at adopting new energy-saving technologies and planting of more trees. The emphasis should also be laid on increasing the use of renewable energy sources like solar and wind. It is high time for leading emitters of CO2 to formulate national programs to address climate change. Only then the effect of climate change on our world can be reduced.


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